Kern County Sheriff's Office reminds the public about phone scam

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - The Kern County Sheriff’s Office is warning the public once again about a telephone scam targeting Bakersfield area residents which began in late February.

Officials began receiving calls from concerned citizens regarding a possible phone scam occurring in the Bakersfield area, Friday. After speaking to several citizens deputies were able to determine that an unknown person had been calling area residents and identifying himself as an employee of the Sheriff’s Office.

The unknown suspect called several area residents and identified himself as Lieutenant Gore from the Sheriff’s Office Warrant Service. The caller indicated that the person he was calling had an outstanding warrant for their arrest and he was giving them an opportunity to pay the fine to avoid arrest.

The caller also said if they responded to the Sheriff’s Office they would be arrested there.

Deputies were able to identify one victim who purchased a pre-paid credit card for several hundred dollars and provided it to the suspect to pay a fine. When the transaction was complete the suspect told the victim he would provide them with a new court date, case number, and address for the court.

The telephone number the suspect caller is calling from is out of the state of Georgia. The caller is also described as having a heavy southern accent.

Since those initial reports, deputies have investigated several additional complaints about similar calls and it appears the telephone scam is ongoing in the Bakersfield area.

KCSO would like to warn citizens to be suspicious when receiving calls from unknown callers, and further say they not solicit payment for fines by telephone.

If any citizen receives a similar type of call, they should note the incoming call number, disconnect the call, and immediately report the incident to the Sheriff’s Office.

If anybody has information on this case or has received a similar call, they should call the Sheriff’s Office at (661) 861-3110.

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